Acute quetiapine dose-dependently exacerbates anhedonia induced by withdrawal from escalating doses of d-amphetamine

Simon Zhornitsky, Stéphane Potvin, Emmanuel Stip, Pierre Paul Rompré

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Recent clinical studies show that the atypical antipsychotic medication, quetiapine, may be beneficial in the treatment of substance abuse by alleviating the withdrawal-negative affect stage of addiction. Since the effect of quetiapine on central reward function is largely unknown we studied its effects on brain stimulation reward in animals under withdrawal from escalating doses of d-amphetamine. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained to produce an operant response to receive a short train of electrical stimulation to the lateral hypothalamus. Measures of reward threshold were determined with the curve-shift method in different groups of rats before, and during four days after treatment with escalating doses (1 to 10. mg/kg, i.p.) of d-amphetamine or its vehicle. At 24. h of withdrawal, the effects of two doses of quetiapine (2 and 10. mg/kg i.p.) were tested. Animals treated with d-amphetamine showed a 25% reward deficit at 24. h of withdrawal, an effect that decreased progressively over the next three days. Quetiapine attenuated reward in the vehicle-control animals, and amplified the anhedonia at the moderate, but not the low, dose in the animals under withdrawal. These results show that acute treatment with clinically relevant doses of quetiapine for the treatment of schizophrenia may exacerbate anhedonia induced by amphetamine withdrawal. Further research should investigate whether repeated treatment with quetiapine has the ability to reverse amphetamine withdrawal-induced anhedonia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)695-703
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Neuropsychopharmacology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Amphetamine
  • Anhedonia
  • Dopamine
  • Quetiapine
  • Reward
  • Tolerance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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